Indianapolis-based MakeMyMove, which offers a platform and services for communities hoping to lure new residents, has secured $2.6 million to help the company keep up with rapid growth.
MakeMyMove is an outgrowth of a company called TMap, which was established in 2018 by Angie’s List co-founder Bill Oesterle and former Angie’s List executive Evan Hock. TMap’s original focus was to find former Indiana residents who might be enticed to move back to the state for jobs in the tech sector.
Once the pandemic hit, TMap saw a new opportunity, and MakeMyMove was born.
“We [at TMap] were using data science to specifically target likely employees, and then the pandemic hit and we saw the phenomenon of remote work and we said, ‘We could take our tools and apply them to recruiting remote workers,’” Oesterle said. “That worked out really well.”
MakeMyMove will use the investment to scale up and hire several new employees, particularly in the areas of engineering, product development and sales. The company currently has 15 employees, with the goal of growing to 20 by year’s end.
Oesterle said the $2.6 million came from Indianapolis-based Elevate Ventures plus several individual investors.
Makemymove.com offers a platform where communities can advertise the incentives they offer to new residents. Those communities can also hire the company for other services if they want help with things like building incentives programs, targeting talent pools and marketing.
“We help them sell themselves,” Oesterle said.
One early success story, for instance, is Greensburg. The Indiana town has gained nationwide attention for its incentives package, which includes $5,000 cash, a year’s free YMCA membership and babysitting services through an effort called Grandparents on Demand. Many other Indiana locations have also signed on, including Noblesville, Bloomington, Muncie, Lafayette and West Lafayette, Southwest Indiana and French Lick, among others.
Other participating communities include both big cities and other rural areas across the U.S., from Ketchikan, Alaska, to El Paso, Texas, to Naples, Florida.
MakeMyMove earns revenue through consulting fees, plus fees based on leads or relocations.
To date, the company has signed up nearly 100 communities from around the U.S.—and that number is growing rapidly. Oesterle said 33 new communities signed up just last month.
Companies can also use MakeMyMove to connect with potential remote workers, and about 50 companies have signed on to date, Oesterle said.
In just less than a year of operation, Oesterle said, makemymove.com has gotten a million visits, and it’s had 50,000 individuals fill out profiles indicating their interest in relocating.
“It’s a very specialized site, so that’s a big number,” Oesterle said.